I Am TreePeople: Yujuan Chen

Los Angeles is on the cusp of something big. Every day, more and more Angelenos are waking up to the threats climate change and extreme heat bring to life in the city.

For over 40 years, TreePeople has committed itself to fighting for a greener and healthier Los Angeles. From Watts to the Santa Monica Mountains, TreePeople has planted over 3 million trees in partnership with millions of Angelenos, but planting trees is only the start. Our Policy & Research department tackles the tough issues facing our climate reality– from securing a safe, local water supply, to working to creating an Urban Forestry Master Plan– and makes sure the voices of the people reach not only the halls of power in Downtown LA, but to Sacramento and beyond.  

Helping us lead that charge is Yujuan Chen, TreePeople’s new Senior Manager of Urban Forestry Policy. Her job is to work hand in hand with State and City officials to craft new approaches to preserve and restore trees in our communities — making Los Angeles a cooler and more equitable place to live

Originally from Bozhou, China, Yujuan brings a lifetime of passion and experience to TreePeople.

“I’ve always been fascinated by the beauty and power of nature,” Chen said.

This enthusiasm to understand the world around us led her to spend time researching urban forests at Virginia Tech’s Forest Ecosystems Lab and for the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome. She now brings what she’s learned here to help Los Angeles.

“Urban Forestry is unique in that is not just about trees and forests, but most importantly it is about people,” states Chen.

She believes the solution for some of the world’s most pressing problems lies in the voices of those striving for healthy and sustainable change in our cities.  

“I was in graduate school when I heard about TreePeople for the first time,” Chen said. “They are a leader in connecting people with nature by working closely with communities and volunteers. I am proud to be part of their mission of healing nature and improving people’s quality of life.”

Help us protect our local forests and mountains. Become a member today to invest in a shaded LA.

As staff photographer and videographer, Adam brings a decade long passion in telling people's stories to TreePeople. From the joy of a tree planting to the behind the scenes efforts of our policy advocacy and restoration work, Adam captures it through his lens so it can be shared with the world. When he's not behind the camera, he can most likely be found curled up with his cat Kinsella.